The TinCaps are the Midwest League nominee for the Patriot Award, which recognizes a team that shows outstanding support for the U.S. military and its veterans. Each of the 14 MiLB leagues nominates a club and the winner will be announced in November.
"We take pride in this nomination because of how much we value the military and veterans in our community and all around," TinCaps president Mike Nutter said in a statement. "We have no shortage of appreciation for the sacrifices our military and their families make. They’re the reason we’re able to do what we do and enjoy our national pastime. We thank them for this, too."
The TinCaps hold an annual Military Appreciation Night, in which members of the armed forces and their families are given complimentary tickets. Auctions of specialty jerseys worn by the team on Military Appreciation Night and on Fourth of July this season raised $10,000 for Honor Flight Northeast Indiana.
Military salutes have become commonplace at TinCaps games, as fans with a military connection are treated to an enhanced ballpark experience. On July 22 this season, an air force sergeant surprised his wife and daughter at Parkview Field by returning from a deployment.
The TinCaps also partnered with the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution to dedicate a POW/MIA Chair at Parkview Field earlier this year.
"The consistent excellence exhibited by Mike Nutter, owner Jason Freier and the entire Fort Wayne TinCap family is shown in the many times the franchise is honored by Minor League Baseball and other national publications," Midwest League president Dick Nussbaum said in a statement. "What is most impressive is the recognitions come in many different categories. For anyone to top Fort Wayne will have to be extraordinary."
The award will be presented to the winning team Dec. 9 at the Baseball Winter Meetings in San Diego.